UCT master's student Giselle Vicatos, whose team recently won the gold medal for the women's epee fencing event at the African Games (previously known as the All-Africa Games), now has the Olympics 2016 firmly in her line of vision.
Said Vicatos: "Before the finals (in Brazzaville in the Republic of Congo), the four of us sat down together and strategised how each of us could capitalise on our individual strengths and use that to our advantage. The Egyptians were strong opponents, therefore it was vital that at every point in the match we knew exactly what our goal was and how to achieve it."
Vicatos said attending the African Games had been a great exercise in building team cohesion and confidence ahead of important Olympic qualifier events.
To qualify for the Olympics in 2016, the team must be ranked number one in Africa, as well as top 16 in the world. They currently meet both criteria. To maintain this position, they must now perform at four international team qualifier events, which will be held in various countries around the world.
"One of the biggest challenges we face is financing these qualifier events due to a lack of funding, but we remain positive that we will overcome this hurdle and make our country proud in Rio," she said.
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